Rain, Rain, Rain: Wet Weather Impacting Central Alabama Strawberries, Peaches

Dan CooperAlabama, Peaches, Strawberries, Weather

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Central Alabama peach and strawberry producers have been challenged with rain events that are impacting this year’s crops. Disease pressure has been widespread in both crops, according to David Lawrence, regional Extension agent in central Alabama.

“We’ve seen a lot of disease this year. The diseases that we normally see more in the mid-summer, we’re seeing those this time of year,” Lawrence said. “A lot of strawberry guys are dealing with disease issues. We’re seeing a little bit of disease on some peaches, little brown rot and stuff. That’s probably just a lapse in the spray schedule, not necessarily weather affected. But getting all of these rain events, disease is more prevalent. That’s the biggest issue we’ve seen, just disease pressure.

“We’ve seen some damage from disease and seen some insect damage this year that we don’t normally see, but for the most part, (strawberry) yields have been pretty good.”

Like most of the Southeast, Alabama has been saturated this spring with excessive rain events, including earlier this week and starting again on Friday. That has been a common theme this spring. “Three weeks ago, we went, maybe 10 days to two weeks without any rain. Other than that little stretch, it’s been fairly wet, getting a decent little rain every three, four or five days,” Lawrence said.

Clint Thompson